2009-02-27 Spike activity

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news:

BBC Radio 4′s science programme Leading Edge covers memory in the dock, and memory and ageing.

New Scientist discusses virtual autopsies and looks inside the skull of a suicide victim with a medical scanner.

One for Spanish language readers: El Pais discusses the neuroscience of religion and spiritual experience with an article entitled ‘Dios habita en el cerebro‘.

Seed Magazine discusses the role of the internet in the recent voodoo fMRI controversy with a mention of Mind Hacks.

Beauty affects men’s and women’s brains differently, reports Wired.

The Times discusses the increasing trend for children with behavioural problems to be given numerous psychiatric diagnoses.

Neuroscientists develop ‘wireless‘ activation of brain circuits, reports press release on EurekaAlert.

Petra Boynton covers the ‘Facebook causes cancer’ debacle and the subsequent unhelpful and misleading contribution from neuroscientist Baroness Greenfield who should know better.

A study on the social benefits of social networking is covered by The Washington Times. Does this mean Facebook cures cancer too?

New Scientist discusses the psychology and neuroscience of suicide.

BBC’s science programme Horizon recently had a programme on the neuroscience of dreaming which is available to view online for another month or so. UK residents only though unfortunately.

The Neurocritic has an excellent critique of a recent imaging study that was rather widely and poorly reported as ‘men think of women in bikinis as objects’.

Does mentioning sex help students learn about other stuff too, asks Cognitive Daily with coverage of an interesting study on exactly this.

Science News reports that people who hold negative attitudes toward the elderly have an increased risk of heart-related ailments later in life.

An interesting study on the role of the 5-HTTLPR gene in attention to fearful or positive images is appallingly spun by New Scientist with nonsense about ‘happiness genes’ and genetic basis for optimism.

The Daily Mash has a <a href="Daily Mash
http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/society/facebook-gives-you-short-attention-span%2c-says…–ooh-what%92s-that?-200902251602/”>satirical take on the ‘Facebook causes cancer / rots your brain’ nonsense.

Research suggesting a possible genetic flag for brain cancer is covered by Science News.

The New York Times reports on a recent small sample size but interesting study on structural brain changes found in childhood abuse victims.

Brain scans replace job interviews within five years, reports gullible Digital Journal.

Neuroanthropology reviews a bunch of great brain books for kids. Yay!

New kind of epilepsy shakes up memory, reports New Scientist who seem to have no idea that transient epileptic amnesia is not new.

Furious Seasons is essential reading at the moment – e.g. catching AstraZeneca ordering it’s Seroquel sales reps to lie about the the drug causing diabetes. In case you didn’t know journalist Phil Dawdy is entirely funded by reader donations and he’s having a fundraiser at the moment.

First gene discovered for most common form of epilepsy, reports Science Daily.

BBC News reports that Alzheimer’s plaques may have a bigger impact on the brain than previously thought.

An interesting study on the interplay between reason and emotion in buying decisions is covered by Frontal Cortex.

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